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50th Episcopal Anniversary/90th Birthday: Obaseki, Onaiyekan Shower Encomiums On Ekpu

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The governor of Edo State, Godwin Obaseki and former Archbishop of Catholic Archdiocese of Abuja, His Eminence John Cardinal Onaiyekan, Wednesday, showered encomiums on Archbishop emeritus, Most Rev (Dr) Patrick Ekpu, describing him as one of those who laid foundation for modern Catholic Church in Nigeria.

Obaseki who spoke at a service to mark the 50th Episcopal anniversary and 90th birthday of Ekpu at St Paul Catholic Church, Benin City ,described the Archbishop emeritus as one who served in various local communities as a young priest who understands the customs of the people and bringing them to God.

He said, “We will continue to tap from his wisdom to guide us as we pass through difficult times. He was a great patriot, a pious priest, visionary bishop, a rare archbishop, a living legend, a modest teacher, an audacious founder.”

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Delivering a homily, Onaiyekan said the era Archbishop emeritus laid foundation for modern Catholic Church in Nigeria coincided with the Nigerianisation policy of the country in the early seventies.

He added that it was a time the Catholic was also undergoing reformation which gave room for Nigerians to take over the leadership of the church.

He named Archbishops Joseph Ukpo, late Ephraim Obot late Alexius Makuoze among others who laid foundation for modern Catholic Church in Nigeria.

He said: “The year 1971 was a tremendous year for the church in Nigeria when seven young Nigerian priests were appointed bishops.

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“Our young bishop took the helms of leadership of their dioceses at a delicate period in the history of the church.

“It was just a few years after the end of the second Vatican council, a period of uncertainty and instability, as the church groped her way to implement the truly revolutionary changes that the council had decreed very significant. Among such changes was the need to adapt the church to the realities of our times and the realities of our native laws and customs in every aspect of church life.

“It was also the era of local music and instrument. It was the era of review of the administrative structure.

“The bishop had to ensure that all these were done without departing from the essence of our catholic faith and tradition.

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“We can now safely say that our young bishops proved themselves better qualified to do this than any foreign born.

“The young bishops were plunged into a challenging socio-political period. Many wise men in the world’s way but of little faith did not expect them to successfully cope with the demand of their high office, but God’s ways are not our ways.

“Looking back now, 50 years down the line, we can see that the Holy Spirit did not make a mistake.

READ ALSO: BREAKING: Again, Pastor Taiwo Odukoya Loses Wife

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“They have led the churche entrusted to their care successfully until their meritorious retirement at the full age of 75. Not every former office holder deserves the title emeritus.”

Earlier in his welcome address, the Archbishop of Benin Diocese and president, Conference of Catholic Bishops, His Grace, Dr Augustine Akubeze said Ekpu invested in human development and the growth of the people of God.

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EndSARS: No Peace Without Justice, Eedris Abdulkareem To Sanwo-Olu

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Nigerian Music legend, Eedris Abdulkareem has condemned Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu over his invitation for a peace walk in Lagos State.

Sanwo-Olu, in a speech on Tuesday on the Lekki shootings of October 20, 2020, said he will be leading a Walk for Peace in December to herald the “healing of our land”.

“Let me use this occasion to extend an open invitation to our youths, members of the diplomatic corps, civil society groups, students, and the media as well as other stakeholders to join me,” he said.

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He specifically extended invitations to Falana, Adebayo, Dele Farotimi, Temitope Majekodunmi, Segun Awosanya (Segalink), Adedotun (Just Detoun), Seun Kuti; Commissioner of Police, Hakeem Odumosu; and Commander of Rapid Response Squad CSP Yinka Egbeyemi and others to join him in the “historic march for our dear Lagos.”

Falz and Mr Macaroni have since rejected the invitation as they demanded justice of those allegedly killed during the EndSARS protest before peace can be restored.

Eedris, taking to his Instagram page described the invitation for the walk of peace as being dead on arrival.

READ ALSO: EndSARS: Lagos Govt Releases White Paper In Panel Report

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According to him, no amount of walking can get Nigeria to the destination of peace without the route of justice.

His post read, “Dead On Arrival; No amount of walking can get us to the destination of peace without taking the honourable route of justice.

“Sanwo-Olu your walk of peace is dead on arrival.”

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BREAKING: Court Dismisses Suit Seeking Soludo’s Disqualification As Anambra Governor-elect

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A Federal High Court in Abuja has dismissed a suit seeking the disqualification of Prof. Charles Chukwuma Soludo as the governor-elect of Anambra State.

Justice Taiwo Oladipupo Taiwo, in a judgment, described the suit as frivolous, irritating, and lacking in merit.

The judge awarded a punitive cost of N2 million against the two plaintiffs to be paid to Soludo and his deputy, Ibezim.

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‘Why We Will Allow ‘Repentant’ Boko Haram Terrorists To Go Scot-free’—Borno Gov

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Governor of Borno State, Babagana Zulum has said the state government will not prosecute ‘repentant’ Boko Haram insurgents.

While presenting the 2022 budget at the State House Of Assembly on Tuesday, Zulum said terrorists will not be encouraged to eschew violence if they see ‘repentant’ ones being prosecuted.

Addressing the House of Assembly, the governor said, “Mr. Speaker, honourable members, we need Allah’s guidance and the utmost wisdom to work for an end to the crisis facing our dear state.

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“Prosecuting all the criminals (insurgents) would have been most appropriate but if we insist on it, we would discourage others out there that are willing to lay down their arms.

“The terrorists’ ranks could swell and our innocent fellow citizens, particularly those in local government areas, could become more vulnerable to attacks and abductions.”

READ ALSO: Police Rescue Soldier, 15 Others Abducted By Boko Haram

Noting that the exercise to de-radicalise terrorists is being handled by security forces, Zulum said the initiative does not give terrorists the freedom to kill and immediately seek pardon.

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He said none of the ‘repentant’ terrorists had been reintegrated into society yet, adding that terrorists willing to surrender must immediately “stop further attacks on civilians, security agents and facilities”.

 

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